Looking Toward the Future
As we extend our fond Thanksgiving memories forward into the December holidays, we at Atlantic Eye are reminded that, first and foremost, this is the season of giving. And what better gift could there be than the gift of sight? That’s why at this time of year we thought it important to share some information about the beautiful gift of corneal tissue donation.
What is a corneal transplant?
The cornea is the clear, front window of the eye. It helps focus light into the eye so that you can see. The cornea is made of layers of cells. These layers work together to protect your eye and provide clear vision.
Corneal transplants are the most common use of donated eye tissue. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, nearly 47,000 cornea transplants are performed each year to restore vision in people with corneal injuries or keratoconus (when the cornea thins out and bulges, preventing clear vision) or other eye disorders.
Of all transplant surgery done today – including heart, lung, and kidney – corneal transplants are the most common and successful. To find out more about corneal transplant surgery, go to https://atlanticeye.com/services/cornea/
Are there other uses for my eye tissue donation?
Yes. Other parts of the eye are equally vital in the mission to save sight. In addition to the cornea, tissue from the retina, lens, and other parts of the eye are necessary for scientists seeking to find the causes of and cures for eye disorders and diseases. Studying this donated tissue, researchers strive to develop new treatments and cures for diabetic eye disease, cataracts, macular degeneration, and glaucoma.
A priceless gift
People of all ages and even those with poor vision usually have corneas that qualify for donation. If you choose to be an eye donor, you can be proud knowing you will be helping to improve the quality of life for someone with little to no sight.
In New Jersey, you can register as an organ donor at https://www.organdonor.gov/sign-up. Or you can sign a card at the N.J. Dept. of Motor Vehicles stating that you want to be an organ donor after death, and specifying which organs you want to give.
We each have the power to save the eyesight of one or possibly two people who need new corneas, and to help the millions of people who benefit from eye tissue research.
The Atlantic Eye physicians and staff send the warmest of wishes to all our patients and families during this holiday season.